Henderson has transformed the former VFW hall and ballet studio into a multi-room club. Originally slated to open for Hoopfest weekend, the remodel has been more expensive than expected and has taken longer. It's a dream space for Henderson, though, so he's not rushing it. "I had no plans to open a club," he says, "then I saw this place."
Here's our first look.
The Game Room has two pool tables, a love seat and an as-yet-unknown number of flat-screen televisions.
Sixteen tracks off the venue's mixing board will also feed into a recording studio behind the sound room, allowing the Casbah to record live performances in relatively high quality. The recordings will then be downloadable by concert-goers and bands. Henderson hopes it will attract both fans -- by giving fans "a little sound souvenir" -- and bands, by giving them a near-instant live recording.
The Ballroom is long, narrow and -- judging by the pre-opening party this summer featuring Giant Panda -- has good acoustics. The room alone could easily accommodate the space's entire 299-person capacity. Depending on demand, terraced seating in back may one day be VIP-only areas.
The Chill Room is designed to have a more mellow vibe. It has soundproofing in the walls to keep it acoustically isolated from the rest of the venue, allowing a DJ to spin Marvin while the Ballroom hosts the Saturday Knights, or whatever.
Casbah (416 W. Sprague, second floor) opens Friday, Oct. 17, at 10 pm, with Ohmega Watts spinning a DJ set in the Ballroom and with Cheddar Chad in the Chill Room. Free. Call 747-1600.